Americans Live in Fear - The Missourian: Columns

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Americans Live in Fear

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Posted: Saturday, January 19, 2013 5:00 pm

From what people tell us, the thirst for guns in America is due to fear. They believe they need guns for protection. What has brought about this widespread fear?

Going back to the founding of this country, Americans have had fear. That fear led to the Second Amendment.

Life in the United States has never been more violent than it is today. The Wild West was never as violent as conditions are today.

Owning a gun, and knowing how to use it, gives a person a feeling of security. It may be that 99.9 percent of the people with guns will never have to use them for protection, but it’s that feeling of security that people want.

The rise in the availability of illegal drugs and the use of them is a major factor in gun violence and killings. People in a drug-influenced condition and armed with a gun are apt to use it. Many shootings occur over drug deals. Years ago our prisons were filled with felons who committed crimes while high on alcohol. That still occurs, but now it’s more likely that drugs are involved.

Adding to our gun culture are the violence-laced movies, television programs and video games. Our children are raised on a menu of violent entertainment, most of it involving guns.

It is difficult to understand why people in foreign countries want to come to America even though they know violence is rampant. They still must view America as the land of opportunity and conditions are better here than in the countries where they live.

There are shootings and killings in nearby St. Louis just about every night. It’s the same in other large cities. But the use of guns to kill occurs quite often today in rural areas. In fact, violence with or without guns happens just about everywhere. It, of course, is most prevalent in urban areas.

People in rural areas where law enforcement officers are miles away in particular will tell you that they need a gun for their security. They don’t feel safe without a gun even though there is little crime in those particular areas. Fear.

There is no way to calm those who fear for their safety.

As long as fear is present, people will have guns regardless of any controls that may be enacted. Perhaps more people now believe the president’s proposals are reasonable, but the gun advocates “fear” they will lead to more restrictions later.

Fear is difficult to overcome!

/opinion/columns

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